Very Slow Cooked Lamb Breast with Onions, Anchovies and Potatoes

Big Man and I are addicted to Car Boot Sales. They are (I think) a curiously English phenomenon, like caravanning and Morris dancing. Neither of which are our thing, but each to his own I say.

Basically it’s a good chance for a clear out of all your old rubbish/unwanted gifts/unwise purchases and fashion horrors. You then load these into your car, rock up to a local leisure centre or field (weather depending and also it helps to have the farmer’s permission and the participation of other car booters or you might get whisked away by the local police for fly tipping or bonkers behaviour) and sell your stuff out of the car boot. If, like me, you love to recycle and reuse and you think someone else’s unwanted stuff could possibly be your treasure and live in hope of coming across a Lalique Vase or Fabergé Egg for pennies which you will then sell for an enormous fortune, then car booting is for you. If the thought of rummaging through someone else’s rubbish turns your stomach….perhaps not.

Recently I bought the world’s most enormous slow cooker for a few pounds at a Car Boot Sale. Result! I’ve wanted one for ages but as nouvelle cuisine sized portions are not my thing (I’m more an Army Catering sort of Chica) I’ve struggled to find one that will let me cook up a good sized pot of food with plenty for dinner then leftovers.

Food Ago 2014 005

My first experiment was a chick pea dish, even though it was a hot, hot day. Delicious, the chick peas were melt in your mouth tender, although it was more a dish for a cold winter’s night.

Flushed with the success of my chick peas I thought I’d try cooking a piece of meat and a rolled lamb breast in the freezer beckoned to me. To be honest, it wasn’t that huge, but made plenty for two good meals for both of us.

Probably not the most photogenic meal in the world, but so tasty, the anchovies melt and just give a depth of flavour to the vegetables (not fishy at all) and can be easily cooked in a regular oven on low/medium for about 3-4 hours.

Ingredients (to serve 4)

  • 1 boned rolled lamb breast (about 800g)
  • 8 medium potatoes, peeled and cut into large chunks
  • 4 medium onions, peeled, halved and thinly sliced (I used both red and white)
  • 1 head of garlic, the cloves separated but not peeled
  • 1/2 teaspoon of turmeric
  • 1 tin of anchovies in oil
  • 2 tablespoons of olive oil
  • Salt and pepper
  • A glass of white wine

Mix all the ingredients (except the lamb, salt & pepper and wine), together and put into the bottom of the slow cooker or a deep ovenproof dish. Place the lamb on top, season well and pour the wine over. Cover with a lid and cook in the slow cooker for about 10 hours on low or in the oven (as explained above).

When cooked, slice the meat and serve over the potatoes which will be cooked but still holding their shape, and the onions which will be melted and tender. Pour over the juices and congratulate yourself on how fabulous you are at making something so tasty with so little effort. Or is it just me that does that?!


55 thoughts on “Very Slow Cooked Lamb Breast with Onions, Anchovies and Potatoes

  1. Brilliant post! I had one of those minute slow cookers in the 80s. I really struggled to find anything small enough to cook in it, so I probably only used it once. I wouldn’t mind having a large one, but perhaps a cast iron casserole is the next best thing. Your lamb sounds delicious, especially with the anchovy seasoning 😉

    1. It really is mammoth – which suits us! It was a timely buy as the new house currently doesn’t have a cooker so am relying on an electric camping hob, the bbq and my slow cooker!

      1. That definitely sounds like the slow cooker for me. I like the idea of you current cooking tools – it sounds like an adventure 🙂

      2. It is indeed a bit of an adventure – especially as I also only have two sockets to plug the various thingies into plus it was either the washing machine or the dishwasher to be plumbed in….I chose washing machine but am getting fed up of washing plates in the smallest sink in the world. May have to buy plastic plates and glasses!

      3. I’ve got no problem with washing up. I had a dishwasher years ago, in America, but only used it twice, at Thanksgiving and Christmas! However, a small sink would be an absolute nightmare!
        I seem to remember that Quentin Crisp never washed or dusted. His philosophy was to move things around to keep them dustless (or not move them at all so as not to show the dust) and he smelled the plates before going food shopping, to see what would compliment his last meal. Disgusting I know, but it does have a certain logic to it 😉

  2. Welcome back! You’ve been missed around here. OMG! I absutely love to find treasures among other’s unwanted stuff, there’s a sort of charm on it. On the other hand I do a regular purge of my own and could use one of those sales, what a shame we don’t have them here in Spain! About the crock pot, I confess I have slow cooker envy right now, hahaha, that looks so yummy!! Looking forward to your recipes on it (I’ve been considering one for ages) 😄

  3. Some where in my cupboards is a slow cooker. I haven’t had it out for years, but you have really tempted me to get it out and use it, Tanya. I always seem to toughen a lamb breast no matter what I do, so the slow cooker is worth a try.

    Re: Car boot sales. A very New Zealand pastime as well.
    We have one at a local church once a month. There could be up to 1 hundred cars on a busy Saturday and only small donation to participate.

  4. I can’t be trusted at sales like that. I once worked at an industrial recycling centre for a year and Pete made me quit – he said we couldn’t afford the renovations needed to store all the stuff I was bringing home. I’ve never cooked lambs breast, but after I saw the title of your post, I spotted them at the butchers and nearly bought them – just as well I didn’t as they weren’t rolled, just cut into bony bits. Your recipe looks absolutely wonderful! xx

    1. I like to think of it as recycling – we’re doing our bit to save the world from over full land fill sites 😉 Bony lamb ribs would probably make a finger licking dish of some sort!

  5. I may put the ingredients together and zoom over to Dad’s and throw in his slow cooker! I am sure we would both enjoy it.

  6. I’m glad you have joined those of us that love a big slow cooker and to think you got a bargain as well. 😀 You lamb and potatoes sounds great.

  7. Mmm, I love chickpeas and ate them all the time in Oviedo, but this slow cooked lamb looks even better! Love that you incorporated anchovies too, I think they’re totally underused in kitchens today.

  8. I think I got lost in all the comings/goings/internet loss 😦 Still in Spain but back in UK again soon? I’m hopeless at cooking lamb (or duck). Can you guarantee me that this will work or should I stick to chick peas? (just as long as they don’t stick to me!) 🙂

  9. I am SO going to start the Tasmanian chapter of the car boot, caravanning , Morris Dancing club. We could drive from boot sale to boot sale lugging our vans so that we could fill them full of lalique and Faberge whilst earning the dosh to buy said car boot bargains by putting on Morris Dancing busking events (most people would pay us to go away but money is money and pride comes before a fall! 😉 ).

    I used to love anchovies in a past life, especially on pizza. I am, as always, a hearty girl of solid breeding stock and anchovies appealed to me on so many differnent planes. Not for me now I am afraid, but love this recipe, the promise of delicious slow cooked food with no worries about stirring and fussing and opening lids and steaming up your glasses (if you have glasses that is…buying glasses, when you don’t need them, specifically to get steamed up when you open pots so that you can complain about it is a bit bonkers!)

    By the way spell checker. You are on notice. When I say “caravanning” I MEAN caravanning NOT “canning”. And when I say “lalique” I MEAN lalique not “applique”… sigh, always critics!

    1. (and where were you when I spelled “differnent” incorrectly eh spell checker? Checking your nails to see if they were dry?!) er…technically, I spelled “differnent” correctly, I spelled “different” incorrectly 😉

    2. Have I told you that you are the loveliest vegan on the planet – only you could even bear to read, let alone comment (so brilliantly) on a post that talks about lamb breasts and anchovies J I am off to whittle some sticks so that I can join your morris dancing troupe as I do love the idea of hitting people over the head whilst jingling bells attached to my legs!

      Roll on the car booting, I’d even give caravanning a go (but not for long, I need my creature comforts….we’re talking shower and loo!) and my spell checker didn’t like morris dancing at all!

  10. I love doing 7 hour leg of lamb in red wine in my slow cooker. They are a marvel of the modern age! I do like the look of your lamb. Good, honest, straightforward food that tastes wonderful. Yum!

      1. I’ll get it over to you…don’t let me forget! Oh! Or maybe I should cook it and blog it! Then I get to eat it too. And the pilaf I make with the leftovers. Nom, nom, nom, nom, nom!

  11. Love car boot sales – always able to pick up a bargain. Think I shall put a slow cooker on my wish list – can’t believe I have never owned one. I can just imagine how the anchovies added a magical depth of flavour.
    Have a super day Tanya.
    🙂 Mandy xo

  12. Looks and sounds yummy. And car boot sales sounds a lot like our yard sales, minus the cars of course. I think it’s wonderful to reuse. I donate my stuff and I buy used stuff. This planet only has so many resources and its a great way to do my part and for a lot less money.

  13. Wow ,it looks yummy .I’ll try this recipe at home.By the way, if I don’t have lamb, is it possible if I cook chicken for your recipe? Thanks for your sharing

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